Sunflowers need so much water and nutrition, and we have neither. But I've put a lot of effort into them, and they bloom. It's interesting that they are dwarves, even with lots of fertilizer and water given by me every morning. They know their environment, and know that they should bloom at 1.25m height, not 3m. The flowers are smaller, but they don't topple over in our high winds. How do they know this when they are genetically programmed to be 3m high, with 0.5 meter wide blooms?
A species more used to harsh conditions is blooming, also. Here's a lovely magma-colored aloe flower spike:
NOTE: I've received some emails about Jerry, offering condolences and letting me know that in the US, Animal Control will have info on reptile-friendly shelters, and that they can capture snakes. Jerry was a conundrum for us in that cornsnakes are natives here, and fairly common. We thought Jerry was a former pet because of his unusual behavior, but we had no way to prove it. Still, next time I'll certainly call Animal Control and make sure any pet snake "released into the wild" gets to a shelter!